ALBANY, NY – June 23, 2008 – “Earlier today I received a personal call from Senator Bruno informing me he will not seek re-election and that it was time to move on with his life. Like many New Yorkers, I am surprised and deeply saddened by the announcement. As I have said publicly on many occasions, Senator Bruno has made a giant contribution to this state and to the Legislature as an institution. I, and my conference, wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”
ALBANY, NY – June 18, 2008 – "Tim Russert was the everyman that everyone wanted to know and be around. In death we mourn his loss but we honor his life and celebrate him as a proud parent, son, Buffalo native, a man of faith as well as a fair journalist and loyal Democrat. Tim worked in the NYS Assembly, in the US Senate and the NYS Executive Chamber before deciding to move to network television where he mentored so many young journalists at NBC News.
Senate Democratic Conference push for mortgage reform and paid family leave (Albany, NY) -- Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith (D-St. Albans) was joined by his Senate colleagues today to urge Senate Republicans in the final days of the legislative session to pass bills to protect homeowners from the mortgage foreclosure crisis, to enact paid family leave, pass progressive Brownfields legislation and act to address the crushing property tax burden.
(Albany, NY) Senate Democrats are calling for tougher laws on domestic abusers and holistic family support systems for victims in New York as the number of incidents continue to increase in some parts of New York.
ALBANY, NY – June 16, 2008 – Senate Democrats have come to the rescue for more than 1500 workers of New York City Off-Track-Betting (NYC OTB) by voting unanimously to pass legislation to avoid shutting down the organization and approving a state takeover of the facilities.
State lawmakers passed a measure today creating an entity called the NYC OTB, a public benefit corporation. NYC OTB will continue to broadcast races on cable television (Channels 71 and 73) for three years.
Senate Democratic LeaderMalcolm A. Smith (D-St. Albans) will be joined by Senate Democratic colleagues as they urge the Senate Republican majority to pass several key measures before the close of the 2008 session. Key legislation includes the paid family leave, mortgage reform, and property tax relief.
ALBANY, NY – On June 12, 2008 Senate Republicans blocked a proposal by Democrats to protect the Meals-on-Wheels program and Senior Center services in New York City, by voting against allowing the measure to come to the floor for debate or a vote.
State Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith (D-Queens) will be joined by Senator Ruth Hassell-Thompson (D-Bronx/Mount Vernon) Senate Colleagues, advocates and law officials to introduce the Senate Minority Task Force on Domestic Violence.
The Task Force has been formed to look into continued incidents of domestic violence in New York and shape new legislation to improve victim services statewide.
With Father’s Day this Sunday, Senate Democrats are calling on the Republican Majority to move legislation to the floor guaranteeing Paid Family Leave to New Yorkers before the end of session.
State Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith is heading the end of session charge with the entire 30-member Democratic Conference, each of whom signed a letter addressed to Senator Thomas Morahan (R-New City) in support of S.8428.
“I commend Governor Paterson for his nomination of Robert Wilmers to head the Empire State Development Corporation. He has a long track record of successfully handling million dollar budgets during his tenure in the financial sector. He will bring a wealth of talent, knowledge and experience to this new position.
The Tri-Level Legislative Task Force and Co-Chair Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith will hold a press conference to release the findings of a report prepared after a series of public hearings were held to examine police practices, procedures, and their impact on the community. The Task Force was formed in the aftermath of the 2006 fatal shooting of Sean Bell by police, which sparked community outrage and protests.
(ALBANY, NY) Senate Democrats joined health advocates in calling for the bipartisan support and passage of stronger legislation protecting consumers from health insurers increasing prescription drug co-payments in New York state beyond the reach of those who need the medication most.
"It is time to lower property taxes and the recommendations outlined by the property tax relief commission represent a major step in the right direction. Based on our preliminary assessments, the proposed plan would help control the rate of school tax increases while providing needed property tax relief to working families throughout the state based on their ability to pay.
Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith will be joined by representatives of the New York City Police Department, District Attorneys, elected officials and community leaders in a citywide emergency meeting to address the recent spike in shooting incidents across the five boroughs. Law enforcement officials have been asked to provide detailed reports on the recent shootings in Harlem, the Rockaways, Jackson Heights, Prospect Heights, and Bedford-Stuyvesant.
Thank you to all of those who participated in the New York State Senate's fist ever online Town Hall. Since we're always striving to serve the people of New York better, and this was our first attempt at an event like this, we would appreciate your feedback on how we can improve the experience.